A record sleeve that isn't a record sleeve
The latest release from musician Stay+ comes in a record sleeve-size package that contains no music format whatsoever. Instead, the highly limited transparent acrylic sleeves contain a foldout, 50inch QR code screen print that leads the buyer to a download page online…
The packaging, conceived by Daniel Mason of Something Else in collaboration with Stay+ comes in three different colourways - there's a red, a green and a blue sleeved version, as shown above. Only 144 in total have been made and are available from stay.cx/arem.
Each sleeve is made from 4mm transparent acrylic made to the same size and template as a standard 12" card record sleeve - even the fold over flaps.
Inside, the folded QR code insert is printed on specially manufactured newsprint, made to size.
Stay+ fans can also buy a six track 12" vinyl version or a digital download instead if they don't fancy this limited edition "physical download" format. All formats include a download code for The Buzzer, a film by DEERHEAD, Stay+ 's longterm visual collaborator, but this particular format's download package is the most comprehensive version of the release as it includes music, the film, stills plus song lyrics.
Here's a film which we linked to via our iPad app last week showing Stay+, DEERHEAD and Daniel Mason overseeing the screen printing of the QR code prints:
Find out more about the release at stay.cx/Stay/the_Stay+_website.html
A CR film in which Daniel Mason talks about his work as a packaging and materials consultant can be viewed in the free sample issue of our iPad app offering. Visit creativereview.co.uk/cr-blog/2012/april/cr-ipad-app for more details.
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It has all the grace and style of a QR code. Led Zeppelin can rest easy.
How unoriginal. Grum did this two years ago.
First done in 2009...
Anyone remember the Grum singles that did this four years ago?
Nice idea but it's pretty ugly, QR codes aren't exactly visually beautiful and I'm definitely not a fan of the use of those particular colours. Seems a shame, I feel like this could have been better done, I don't quite see the point of the printed QR code being so big.
yep. grum did this two years ago
Personally don't like QR Codes and think music should stay the hell away from those tricky blighters.
agreed. grum did this ages ago.
I fail to see the point. What a massive waste of time, effort, money and materials.
@gemma @Tom @Toeenail @beaumont
I think you guys are missing the point. I'm not suggesting that the use of a QR code in relation to a music release (or anything else for that matter) is a new idea. The point of flagging this up here on the blog is because it is a beautifully made physical release that quite unusually doesn't contain any physical music format at all.
For anyone reading these comments and isn't familiar with the Grum work referenced, Grum's colourful series of QR code-featuring sleeves released in 2010 all contained the music on a disc within. And none were housed in beautiful tactile heat bent 12" acrylic sleeves.
"And none were housed in beautiful tactile heat bent 12" acrylic sleeves."
how come CR forget to mention this was designed by m/m paris?
Still a excellent idea (and start), we need a famous singer or actor to jump on the bandwagon so we can get this this moving on the web.. we actually had ours done but we were much more design orientated in creating ours, we added colour and a JPEG picture in the center to be (slightly) different. Have a look and let us know what you think ... If you want a free one designing just drop us a mail with your URL and we will do you one free of charge ;)
QR codes epitomize graphic designers graphic designing for other graphic designers. Makes me puke.
@Gavin I don't think those beautiful acrylic sleeves have photographed particularly well...
this was done in 2008....
so beat em all...
I didn't like this at all until someone said it was designed by M/M Paris - now I love it! Unless Manolo has been misinformed, in which case, I don't like this at all...
Just going to counter the general consensus by saying that this is pretty innovative in my humble opinion, strikes me that this this is a nice way of challenging the download culture in a real fight fire with fire way. Into it!
QR Code are good but unfortunately not enough used.
So many people aren't aware - as yet - how to access what is behind it!
Hopefully, this way of interacting will become more popular - maybe during the Olympics?!
Thanks for this article...I discovered a musician.
I never really comment on reviews but I agree that some people may have missed the point here.
Yes, M/M Paris designed them. "stay+" is written in the QR code: when the poster is folded the text is visible through the acrylic and, when unfolded, in the bottom right. We love everything M/M does for us.
The idea was a 'recordless record' conceived by Daniel Mason and I and there was a very simple reason why we wanted to do it like this-
The "album" that Stay+ and I made had visual content so we didn't want to limit ourselves to an audio only format (track 1 is a 20 minute film). A 50" QR code that leads to a digital download of audio, visual, photo and text files was an XXL way of delivering the content exactly how we intended. We had our tongues firmly in our cheeks when we proposed the idea to RAMP Recordings.
We never intended to be "the first" but we did intend to produce something special for the people that wanted a digital download... the photos don't do it justice.
whilst i'm not a huge fan of this in terms of design i admire it as an attempt to do something different with music packaging and it's great to see how much response it has got - negative or positive!!
you don't get that over a CD jewel case do you?!
Not sure I understand all the negativity here - I have purchased one and it it quite beautiful really. The acrylic is quite thick and weighty making the whole thing very tactile and not at all cheap. Will definitely be keeping it on show and not hidden away on the recored shelf.
Problem is I have no idea how these codes work so haven't been able to hear any of the music :) Still nice though.
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